Comedian Bob Hope performs at Seattle's Aqua Theatre on July 12, 1962.

  • By Greg Lange
  • Posted 7/06/1999
  • Essay 1466
On July 12, 1962, comedian Bob Hope performs with dancer Juliet Prowse to an overflow crowd at the Aqua Theatre, located at Green Lake in Seattle. One of the many stars to perform in Seattle during the World's Fair, he does five shows at the Aqua Theatre from July 13 to 15, 1962.

The 5,618-seat theater sold out for his first performance. Organizers then rented 36 four-person rowboats to accommodate 140 more spectators and hired two lifeguards to safeguard these waterbound Bob Hope fans. They put the rowboats in the Aqua Theatre's pool area.

Hilarious Gags

Bob Hope stayed on the 11th floor of the Olympic Hotel. On the morning of July 12, after getting up at 11 a.m., Hope got ready for lunch with the 101 Club at the Washington Athletic Club. He said, "I wanted to do the 101 Club because of all my friends there. But those things knock you out. It's too much like just another performance. I'd rather just sit down with my friends and have lunch." But when he entered the room he was "on" and "regaled the [club] members with a hilarious barrage of gags."

After lunch Hope walked back to the Olympic Hotel to get ready for a round of golf. On his way, he stopped to sign autographs and waved to cars and buses that honked at him. When he got back to his room, Dr. Fred Miron, Hope's masseur for 13 years, gave him a rubdown.

The Six-foot Divot

Hope was picked up, and, on the drive through downtown, he remarked, "Every city seems to be changing its face. To me it's sort of sad. They're tearing down all these pretty things and putting up these modern office buildings. Now every city looks the same." The car headed for the Seattle Golf and Country Club via Aurora Avenue. On the way they passed Washelli Cemetery and Hope quipped, "Washelli! There's the last hole -- that's that big six foot divot, huh?" Hope played a round of golf with some old acquaintances: Ben Shearer, A. A. (Bob) Littler, Dr. R. Philip Smith, and Torchy Torrance.

After a round of golf, he returned to the Olympic Hotel for another rub down and got ready for his routine at the Aqua Theatre. He gave a 90-minute sold-out performance and then headed back to the hotel to unwind. At 2 or 3 a.m., Bob Hope called it a day.

Sources: Seattle Post-Intelligencer, July 13, 1962, p. 1, 4, 11.

Related Topics:   Celebrities | Theater & Dance

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